API’s are everywhere. API’s are everything

There are API’s for basically everything you can think of. Obviously not all are perfect but they are out there.

Week three of Mod1 came in the blink of an eye, and we were all vaguely introduced to API’s. They sounded aMaZiNg, the way i heard it from my instructors words was that an api would allow me to use all the information i needed and save me time from having to create my own data. It sounded too good to be true, looking into API’s i found it hard to wrap my head around how to use them and which ones were reliable.

I needed this.. I thought i did.

So i took it one step at a time
Whats is an API?? Do i really need to understand them? (They were optional for my project). Do i truly need to monitor APIs? I felt people tended to speak about API’s in a horribly complex way , but in reality they can be easy to understand.

API stands for Application Programming Interface.

In layman's terms an API is a messenger. API’s take request, tells a system what you want done and then returns a systems response back to you. Thats right an API simply something that sends information back and forth between a website or app and a user.

Your messenger arriving with its message for a request

Imagine back to a dark time, before cellphones. Let’s say for example your’e in your own home and your best friend lives down the road. You need to ask your best friend for a recipe, but your’e swamped with labs from class. So instead you send one of your kids and or your partner with a message to your best friend. Your messenger runs down there, gets the recipe, and bring it back to you.

API is the part of the remote server which receives requests and sends responses. It is the code that governs the access points of the server.

APIs provide us with a way to query servers and databases for data so that we can manipulate it in our own applications.They get us access to data from outside sources that is kept up to date automatically. So useful!

Imagine if you wanted to build an app that allowed you to search flights, the prices and even get lives quotes directly from ticketing agencies ?!?!?! Obviously information from a year ago or so would not be helpful you would want the information provided to be updated if the there are any kind of changes especially during a pandemic. You definitely want this without having to go into the app to update it manually. Querying flight search data API (such as Sky Scanner Flight Search) would allow you to integrate all that data.

APIs usually return data in JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) which stores information in key/value pairs. This makes JSON easy to read and access for applications written across multiple programming languages, including Ruby, Java, and Python.

APIs are full of potential, they allow you to communicate and build across applications.You use them daily and are either aware or are not , doesn't really change anything .They are not going anywhere and at one point we may even make our own.

They are here to help us.

The first reason why APIs matter is that your site, app or service isn’t doing anything without them. You need them to process an order and confirm payment if you are selling anything. You need them to collect data if that is the goal of your solution. A service can’t just sit there doing nothing. The Internet is too interactive for that.

The second reason is that APIs these days are packaged as products that developers can use to build your site or app or even to add value or a new way to deliver value for the systems you build.

For fun top 5 API’s according to Rapid API

  1. Sky scanner flight search
  2. Open Weather map
  3. API Football
  4. The cocktail DB
  5. REST Countries

Full Stack Software Engineer || Entrepreneur at heart , engineer by training. Comedian in the eyes off my peers.